Fee increase planned for CW pool

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Enjoying a cool dip in the Canal Winchester municipal swimming pool will cost more in 2008, with fees rising for the first time in more than 13 years.

Pool managers Kim Christian and Hailee Gibbons asked Canal Winchester Village Council for the fee hike due to increases in the minimum wage, chemical costs, delivery surcharges, equipment replacement costs, and overall maintenance.

"The new pool facility opened in 1999 and rates were not raised at this time," wrote Christian and Gibbons in an Aug. 17 memo. "To (our) knowledge, membership and daily admission rates have not increased since at least 1994 and, to my recollection, they were not increased for some time before that."

Family and individual rates will increase by $20 from the $80 to $200 range to the $100 to $220 range. In 2008, the daily admission rate will be $5, which managers say will help in cash register management by avoiding numerous trips to the bank for change. The $2 admission charge was also changed from after 5 p.m. to after 7 p.m. Swim lesson rates stayed the same, but the fee for all pool parties was changed from a sliding scale to a standard $100 charge.

An ordinance adopting the new fees was read for the first time at council’s Oct. 1 meeting.

Other CW news

•Council heard the first reading of legislation outlining a change in the Transient Occupancy Tax Grant program.

Non-profit or private organizations and public agencies in Canal Winchester will have an open window from the beginning of February through March 31 to apply for project grants from the village. Grants will be competitively reviewed and awards made no later than May 31.

The six percent tax was imposed in 1997. Half of the collections are contributed to the Canal Winchester Visitors and Convention Bureau to promote the village and the other half is dedicated for grants to organizations to further enhance the community.

•Applicant Damon Pfeifer asked council to defer a decision on his appeal of a conditional use permit for a Winchester Pike winery until Oct. 29 so his attorney, David Dye, could prepare his presentation to the village. In a Sept. 27 letter, Assistant Village Solicitor J. Corey Colombo told Pfeifer the village would be amenable to delaying the 60-day deadline in order to allow him additional time in determining how best to proceed.

•According to the 2000 U.S. Census, Canal Winchester had 4,478 residents in Franklin and Fairfield counties. Seven years later, the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) estimates the village’s population at 6,345 with almost 40 more expected to move into Canal Winchester next year. However, overall MORPC numbers throughout the central Ohio area show population growth slipping below one percent for the first time in a long time. The population growth for the village for 2007-08 is 0.6 percent.

•Repairing streets in Winchester Trace will cost the village $24,825 for a contract with Decker Construction.

•Beggar’s Night in the village will be Oct. 31 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

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